transcript: billboard.com q&a

The following is a transcript of Nicki’s Q&A session with Billboard.com for her Live Stream. Please credit Nicki-Minaj.org / Nicki’s World if you use this elsewhere as I typed it myself. Enjoy for those who missed the stream!

She promoted her album and stated she was so used to doing mixtapes. She has about 25% left of the album to do. In order to write the album she just listened to beats and used that way of writing her album.

On the VMA Awards nomination:
She found out via email and said it was “interesting” and didn’t expect it but it was amazing.

What are her chances of winning the award?
She believes she will win!

Do you have any rituals before writing a hit song?
The only thing she considers a ritual is to write early in the morning when no one else is awake at about 6am. When her brain is at it’s peak and hasn’t had to deal with the world yet. She writes in her notebook and in her head. She does a lot of singing on the album and doesn’t write it at all but records it in the studio.

Whats the difference between your mixtapes/album?
The mixtapes were dope it was saying she can write, and her album is saying she can make a song.

How is she trying to differentiate herself?
She is inspired by the beat and when it comes on she is either going to sing or rap on it. She was doing it as a reference for singers in the business. She left her vocals on a lot of the songs because it’s more personal to her and what she is speaking about, the album has to be very personal. It wouldn’t be the same to have 10 singers on the album. She just did a reference song for someone she has in mind but can’t reveal who she wants to sing it.

Will there be a deluxe special edition of the album with bonus DVD features.
She said she will but hasn’t figured out what she will put in the bonus and doesn’t wanna give anyone else ideas. It will be very “enchanting”. She noted at 1.5 million she’ll bring out the bells & whistles.

What’s the one thing she has learned since being a mainstream artist?
Since she has been a mainstream artist shes learned that things happen very quickly. When you can take a moment just absorb it because the last year of her life she can’t tell you anything she remembers – just going. She didn’t realize it would be this quick when it did pick up. Just taking it all in – pause.

What positive effects being in a group like Young Money offers?
It keeps her street edge, she can’t be too up in the sky because Wayne keeps her grounded. She takes pride in making her 16 bars spectacular it’s always in and out – pause.

What’s it like transitioning from features to doing her own thing?
She says shes so critical of her own stuff and takes longer because she is always psyching herself out thinking it’s not good enough. When she does features she just lets it happen and it’s alot quicker.

How does she know when she is done?
She never really thinks this is the way it’s suppose to do. When she listens to something on the radio she always thinks she should have done it differently. She just has to force herself away from the song and her team tells her now she’s bugging it’s good leave it alone.

Why did you change your rapping style from the Come Up days to today?
She doesn’t think shes changed her rap style. She believes everyone is just starting to hear her, shes always been a little weird. She believes people think she changed her persona and life is about growth & change and she wants to be able to do that. She respects the people who loved 07 Nicki, and she will show that on “Pink Friday”. She started going different places and eating differently and it would be fraudulent because she isn’t the same.

What’s inspiring her now?
LA. It’s giving her a new outlook and it feels free. She states shes from New York and it made her feel she had to rap a certain way. But now she sees New York has embraced her changes and she feels even better and allows her to do other things.

If you could make fantasy singing-rap group who would she pick?
Hermani from Harry Potter she would do the talking stuff cause she had an accent. Angelina Jolie. Snooki [laughs]. She would be like one of the backup dancers. She would have to have Lauryn Hill. And she would have to have Cyndi Lauper. Because she is fun and shes crazy and she reminds her of herself. She couldn’t put in Beyonce because then it wouldn’t be fair. Someone says Whitney and she asks to move to the next question. She stated “How Will I Know” (Whitney Houston) is one of her favorite albums of all time.

Whats her ringtone on her phone?
She doesn’t have one and doesn’t believe in them. She believes they are hot as long as your not in the workplace. She talks bad about it because she doesn’t know how to put it on her phone.

If she wasn’t a rapper what would she be doing?
Probably in India and that’s all she was gonna say. Probably studying Ghanda. Just go to India and lay out. She wanted to study Law but she believes she would just want to travel & study different cultures.

Where has she traveled that she has loved?
She’d rather not say. She was in Tokyo lastnight. She actual has a new Tokyo clothing line coming out there.

Ask Nicki if she would ever come out with her own fashion line?
Not right now, but she just wants to take baby steps. Doesn’t wanna rush anything and get caught up. She needs to get her feet wet, loves fashion but doesn’t want to do something and have someone else running it. Maybe in 3-5 years. Gonna have at least 5 companies, hasn’t talked to Wayne about it but he would definitely embrace it. Barbie & The Dread. Something weird with Lil’ Wayne.

Ask Nicki what are her favorite songs out right now?

California Girls, Find Your Love and Your Love.

When does she listen to music?
She doesn’t listen to the radio very much but when she does have time shes playing a beat to write to. When she is doing a shoot or someone else is driving her thats when she listens, maybe a few times a week.

How would your music career have evolved in Wayne didn’t sign her to YME?
She doesn’t know, hes been such a major part of her career and she couldn’t imagine it without him. He definitely brought the spotlight on her sooner than she could have ever imagined. She has no idea, without him she doesn’t know.

How old were you when you got your tattoo?
She wishes she never got the tattoo because its on her arm. So when she wants to wear a beautiful evening gown its exposed. She was going to get it on the back of her neck. She had him test out her neck and she didn’t like the feeling so she got it on her arm. She was trying to think of how she was going to explain it to her mother because at that time she had a tongue ring. She may have been 16 way too young.

Would she do it again?
No. She would have gotten one Chinese character on her neck.

Nicki says she hates cartoons ask her why?
She may have said it a few years ago. She likes cartoons but she can’t “watch them”. Family Guy is funny.

What TV shows does she like?
Judge Judy. She watched Jersey Shore last seasons, The Hills, Curb Your Enthusiasm and Forensic Files. She says Judge Judy is very straight forward but she is a comedian in her next life. She loves her cause she is little and cute.

What is her favorite thing to do in her spare time?
She doesn’t have it but she likes to watch Judge Judy. Not to sound boring, she used to like to cook but someone told her she needed to go on a diet. She was cooking pasta, fried fish, boneless chicken stew. She has to burn sugar in order to make it. Michael Jai White told her not to eat those things because she was losing and gaining a lot of weight.

What are her plans for the rest of the day?
Shes going to work on finishing up her single, she wanted to have it out about five days ago. She plans to have it out within a week and everyone will be very happy about it. “Pink Friday” November 23rd. She thanks everyone including Billboard for having her.

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